Beware of the Buyer Persona

Chip Fox Buyer Personas, Content Strategy, Webinars

Buyer Personas are in trouble. Most buyer personas focus on irrelevant details and end up missing the mark. Do yours include hobbies? Aspirations? Marital status? If so, your personas likely don’t provide the info you really need to influence the buying decisions. Think about it. What does any of that have to do with making a purchasing decision about your product? To be effective, your buyer personas need to provide insights about your target audience’s buying process.

Do you want to know the best way to stop the “me too” generic content and websites that your industry and competitors have? Do you want to start delivering VALUE to the buying journey that will delight your target market? Watch this replay, and build Buyer Personas the way Adele Revella outlines in this webinar.

There was a remarkable turnout for a terrific subject. We thank Adele Revella of Buyer Persona Institute for presenting. We also thank the attendees for participating and asking such great questions.

A buyer demographic is enough to get you started, but it is missing so many important points. Where is the information that will help you sell to your target buyer? Many businesses will spend money researching irrelevant information about a typical buyer, (for example, marital status, number of kids) when what they really need to focus on is how, when, and why a buyer makes the decisions you want to influence. It’s not as hard as you think.

We’re Too Focused On Generic Benefits

Marketers are often far too focused on generic benefit statements. They are not looking at the specific needs of their buyers. If you think about a buyer profile, you have very general information about that buyer. This information is not providing any guidance outside of the obvious. So what do you do? You adapt obvious, generic benefits. And when it finally comes to talking with your buyer, you don’t end up talking about what they want to hear. So why would they believe you are the most effective company to help them achieve the benefits they really care about?

Build A Relationship of Trust With Your Buyer

The decision buyers eventually make is built on trust. They need to know that you understand their needs and will be responsive. Yet, they also have to be able to influence other decision makers, so they need to see something that helps them handle others’ concerns and priorities.

Strive to get inside these buying decisions, and start to really understand how, when, and why they make their decisions. If you can do that, you have the same potential to influence their decision as the best salesperson in your company listening to buyers one at a time.

This process focuses on gathering insights from actual buyers – NOT through guesswork. If ever there was a place to roll up your sleeves and master a process – THIS IS IT!

What is the Process of Setting Up A Buyer Persona?

Not only do you want a buyer demographic; that is the first step. The second step is to conduct interviews in person with buyers who chose/didn’t choose your product. Each interview will take approximately 30 minutes to distinguish the real reasons buyers make their decisions.

It is also recommended that sales representatives do not initiate the interview. When a sales person meets with a buyer, the walls go up. They will not share the real data with sales people due to psychological perceptions.

Is It Easy to Set Up Interviews?

Yes. Most times when asking for informational interviews people will be happy to talk with you so you won’t need to offer any incentives. People like to tell their story. Sit down with them, and really listen to what they have to say.

When you are looking for someone to interview, look at those who have made similar decisions and who match your demographic profile. You want to really get in and reveal which aspects make the buyers in your target industry and company tick. This is why creating a buyer profile is important; however, you can’t stop there. (This is what most of your competitors do.)

The next step to getting inside the buyer’s head and really starting to gain insights in how they make their decision is by using the Five Insights Into A Buying Decision. Understand each insight by watching the video.

Last Tip – Stay Away From “Persona Generators”

Hope your competitors are using them – but don’t be so easily deceived. In a world where we want things quick, people wanting Buyer Personas have fallen into a deadly trap by using Online Buyer Persona generators. These generators take your “educated guesses” and output a nicely formatted “persona” that lacks any key insights that will help you hit the mark.

Let’s just hope that your competitors are using them, while you start building personas that help you hit it out of the park with your target audience.

We have more webinars scheduled!  Check out what’s coming and join the exploration of marketing ideas that achieve results. If you’re interested in getting the slides to this webinar, they are posted here on SlideShare.